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May 16th, 2022

BargainFinder 347: Accurateshooter’s Deals of the Week

AccurateShooter Deals of the Week Weekly Bargain Finder Sale Discount Savings

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Brownells — RCBS Rebel Master Reloading Kit, $399.99

RCBS Rebel Master Reloading kit Press uniflow measure primer tool brownells
Good press, quality measure, and very complete set of tools

This fine RCBS Rebel Reloading Kit contains all one needs to get started in reloading. This Kit includes: Rebel Single-Stage Reloading Press, Uniflow-III Powder Measure, 1500gr digital scale, hand priming tool, deburring tool, case loading block, powder funnel, hex key set, accessory handle with neck brushes, primer pocket brush, spray case lube, and Speer #15 manual. Currently $399.99 at Brownells, this Kit is a good deal. The exact same Rebel Kit is $439.99 at MidwayUSA and Cabela’s.

2. KYGUNCO — Citadel 12ga Semi-Auto Shotgun, $209.99

shotgun 12 ga semi-auto defense tactical discount kyguncoAmazing deal for under $210 — Sights, good ergos, action and forearm rails

Looking for a semi-auto defensive 12 gauge? This Citadel Warthog offers reliable function, nice ergonomics, and the features you want, all for just a crazy-low $209.99 cash price ($216.29 Credit Card). This nice scattergun boasts a black metal finish and black synthetic stock with black pistol grip. It comes standard with raised tactical rear sight and ghost ring front sight plus a Picatinny rail on the action and on the forearm (for lights etc.). This shotgun includes 3 extended choke tubes. A recent buyer was pleased: “Reliable, great ergonomics, will cycle everything”.

3. Midsouth — SALE on all LEE Presses and Reloading Kits

midsouth LEE tool kit press reloading sale discount
Big savings on all LEE presses, ACP, APP, and reloading kits

LEE makes good basic presses, and the LEE quick-change bushing system for dies is a real time-saver. LEE’s new ACP and APP systems work great for bulk priming and case prep functions. Some top F-Class shooters are now priming with the LEE ACP unit which is very efficient and consistent. Right now all LEE press products and Press kits are on sale at Midsouth. You can save 10-25% on dozens of LEE products. CLICK HERE for all LEE products on sale at Midsouth.

4. Brownells — Magpul PRS Lite Stock for ARs, $99.99

Magpul prs lite stock bag-rider varmint rifle
Excellent AR buttstock that rides bags well, with nice cheekpiece

We like this Magpul PRS Lite Stock for target and varmint work with ARs. The long, straight section on the lower part of the buttstock, with its shallow angle, rides a sandbag WAY better than a typical AR buttstock. This PRS Lite buttstock provides plenty of cheek-height adjustment, as well as 1.4 inches in length-of-pull adjustment. This buttstock, now $99.99 at Brownells, sells elsewhere for $114 or more. We would put this stock (or something similar) on any AR rifle shot from a bench or used with a rear bag. This buttstock is offered in three colors: Black, Flat Dark Earth, or OD Green.

5. Graf & Sons — $70 Rebate on Leupold SX-2 Spotting Scope

leupold alpine sx-2 spotting scope sale instant rebate
Save $70 on quality HD Leupold Spotters now through June 5, 2022

The Leupold SX-2 Alpine HD (High Definition) spotting scope provides exceptionally clear glass and high light transmission. Now through June 5, 2022 you can get a $70 instant rebate when you purchase Leupold SX-2 spotters. Choose the 20-60x60mm SX-2 for $329.99 at Graf’s, or the bigger 20-60x80mm SX-2 for $429.99 at Graf’s. These sale prices include the $70 discount. Savings are automatically applied to the purchase of the following SX-2 Alpine HD models at participating retailers.

6. Natchez — ChargeMaster Combo Dispenser/Scale, $309.99

leupold alpine sx-2 spotting scope sale instant rebate
Effective, very reliable dispenser with detachable scale

The RCBS ChargeMaster was a game-changer for reloaders. And this original-style unit is still preferred by many users because it is very fast and the scale section can be detached and used separately. The ChargeMaster Combo features the ChargeMaster 1500 Scale and ChargeMaster Dispenser. Average dispensing time is less than 30 seconds for a 60gr powder charge. Priced at $309.99 at Natchez on sale, this is a real bargain. The same unit sells for $409.99 on Amazon (100 bucks more). NOTE: If you want to control your scale/dispenser via a Mobile App, we recommend the newer model ChargeMaster Supreme, $408.49 at Precision Reloading.

7. KYGUNCO — .22 LR, .380 ACP, 9mm, .40 SW Ammo Deals

kygunco pistol ammo ammunition sale .380 .40sw 9mm .22 LR
Great deals on quality USA-made pistol and rimfire ammo

KYGUNCO is running a great Ammo Sale right now. Save on popular pistol ammo types. Federal 115gr 9mm is just $16.49 for 50rds. And CCI Blazer .40 SW is $23.70 (50 rds), while Winchester .380 ACP is $20.99 (50 rds). And rimfire ammo is on sale as well — get 333 rounds of Winchester .22 LR ammo for just $24.18 (a mere $0.07/rd).

8. Palmetto State Armory — Norma TAC-22 Ammo, $4.19/box

tac22 22lr ammo sale
Excellent rimfire ammo at a GREAT price — .22 LR Deal of the Year

We’re repeating this deal because we’ve found no other .22 LR ammo that rivals Norma TAC-22 at anywhere near the price — just over 8 cents per round ($4.19/box). If you shoot NRL22 or just practice for fun, grab some Norma TAC22 .22 LR ammo at Palmetto State Armory. On sale at just $4.19 per 50-round box, this TAC-22 ammo is a truly spectacular bargain. In our test, it out-shot some ammo that costs $8 per box. During testing with a CZ 457, one of our Editors had multiple 5-shot groups at 50 yards that were typically one ragged hole (all shots touching). He observed “It’s amazingly good ammo for the money”.

9. Midsouth — Lyman 51st Ed. Reloading Manual, $26.99/$28.99

lyman reloading manual handbook cartridge load data
Good, comprehensive, many powder options, with color illustrations

Everyone should have a good hard copy reloading manual. With a print manual, you can bookmark key pages, quickly compare various powder/bullet combos, and you don’t need a computer in your loading room. We like the Lyman Reloading Manual because it includes all major powder makers. New cartridges in this 51st Edition include 224 Valkyrie, 22 Nosler, 24 Nosler, 6mm ARC, 6mm Creedmoor, 6.5 PRC, 6.5 Weatherby RPM, 6.8 Western, 300 PRC, and more. Choose Hard Cover for $28.99 or Soft Cover for $26.99. Both are good deals — the softcover Lyman 51st Reloading Handbook costs $44.97 on Amazon.

10. MidwayUSA — Hoppes Universal Cleaning Kit, $9.99

hoppes black universal gun cleaning kit brushes mop jag patches
Everything you need to clean pistols, rifles, and shotguns — super-low price

This versatile cleaning kit originally retailed for $39.99. Now just $9.99 on sale, this Hoppes Black Universal Cleaning Kit includes 2 oz. of Hoppe’s High-Performance Gun Cleaner, 2 oz. of Hoppes Precision Gun Oil, a 3-piece aluminum cleaning rod, 5 bronze brushes, 3 nylon jags, 2 cotton mops, one nylon shotgun slotted tip, one shotgun adapter, and cleaning patches, all packaged in a reusable storage case. Killer deal — you could pay $9.99 just for the five brushes.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hot Deals, New Product, Reloading Post comment »
May 16th, 2022

Field Test Report on Savage A17 Rimfire in .17 HMR

Savage 17 HMR .17  A17 A-17 varmint hunting semi-auto rifle accurateshooter.com

One of our favorite cartridges for small varmints is the 17 HMR. Yes, the newer 17 WSM rimfire has better ballistics, but 17 HMR ammunition is considerably less expensive, and you have a much larger selection of rifles and pre-chambered aftermarket barrels. And out to 150 yards or so the 17 HMR is great on ground squirrels and prairie dogs.

If you are looking for a 17 HMR varmint rifle, one rig you should definitely consider is the Savage A17. Now that this model is offered with laminated stock options, you can get a fine little 17 HMR rifle for about $475.00. We do prefer the laminated stock A17s (both standard and thumbhole models) over the basic polymer-stocked version, priced at $440.00.

Savage A17 thumbhole stock

How does an A17 shoot? That question was answered a couple seasons back by Varminter.com in a First Hunt Report. Accurate and affordable, the Savage A17 is also the first .17 HMR to feature a delayed blow-back action. Eric Mayer, Editor of Varminter.com, put the semi-auto Savage A17 through its paces.

CLICK HERE for Savage A17 First Hunt Report on Varminter.com

Mayer wanted to see how the new Savage would perform, accuracy-wise, and he also wanted to see how the A17 fared in the field. Mayer achieved one-MOA accuracy with the Savage A17 using the latest CCI-brand ammo, and he demonstrated the A17 is wickedly effective on ground squirrels. Below we’ve provided highlights from Varminter.com’s Savage A17 First Hunt Report.

“I [collected] as many versions of the currently available .17 HMR ammunition as I could get my hands on. I had already picked-up and tested the new CCI A17 ammunition, so I filled up my ammo safe with other CCI ammunition, as well as Hornady and Winchester, including the lead free 15.5 grain NTX versions, also from Hornady and Winchester. After spending some time at the bench, I saw that this rifle shot the CCI A17 ammunition best, with most groups hovering right around 1″ to 1.20″ at one hundred yards, and some of the other ammo choices in the 1.25″ to 1.50″ range. This was with a warm barrel and in-between cleanings during the break-in process.”

Savage 17 HMR .17  A17 A-17 varmint hunting semi-auto rifle accurateshooter.com

Mayer found the A17 was easy to maintain: “I was very impressed by the ease of pulling the rifle apart for cleaning out in the field. Even with the scope mounted, I was able to quickly and easily remove the parts needed to give me complete access to the barrel through the breach, so cleaning was a breeze.”

A17 Reliability Lessons — Seat Those Rotary Magazines Correctly Folks
Some early A17 purchasers have noted occasional failures to feed. We believe this is because the magazine was not fully seated (and locked in place) in the firearm. The experience of Varminter.com’s Editor seems to confirm this. Mayer reports “As I began to shoot the rifle, I experienced what a few others have reported, with the magazine falling out while shooting. I quickly realized that I was not snapping the magazine into place every time. I found that popping in the magazine while the bolt was pulled, or locked back, resolved the issue. I did have a few failures to feed, but only on some of the older ammunition I was shooting, namely the first year Hornady ammo and the lead free ammo (which is about 3-4 years old). The newer ammo did not have any issues and functioned well, even while shooting some 10-round ‘mag-dumps’. The trigger is on the heavy side.”

A17 Reliability Shown in Video
The Savage A17 went through a very thorough manufacturer’s testing process before it was released to the market. In fact Savage put over 500,000 test rounds through A17 prototypes. When AccurateShooter.com tested the A17 at Media Day — it worked flawlessly, so long as you make sure the magazine is fully seated. We had zero issues, making us think that reported issues may be related to “driver error”; specifically not seating the magazine properly. Watch AccurateShooter.com video with rapid fire sequence.

Permalink - Videos, Gear Review, Hunting/Varminting Post comment »
May 16th, 2022

NRA-ILA Leadership Forum — Donald Trump and Other Leaders

NRA NRA-ILA leadership forum Houston 2022 annual meeting President donald trump ted cruz speaker

The National Rifle Association (NRA) announced former President Donald Trump will address the NRA Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA) Leadership Forum on Friday, May 27, at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston. The Forum begins at 2:00 pm local time in Texas. Other noted political leaders will also speak, including U.S. Senator from Texas Ted Cruz and Texas Governor Greg Abbott.

Former President Trump will address NRA members at the 2022 NRA-ILA Leadership Forum in Houston. This will be the sixth time he has appeared at the NRA-ILA annual event.

NRA NRA-ILA leadership forum Houston 2022 annual meeting President donald trump ted cruz speakerAt the NRA-ILA Leadership Forum, Mr. Trump will be joined in a celebration of Second Amendment rights by Texas Governor Greg Abbott, Senator John Cornyn, Senator Ted Cruz, Rep. Dan Crenshaw, North Carolina Lt. Governor Mark Robinson, and South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem.

Trump Judicial Appointees
Respect the Second Amendment

“Donald Trump is the most enthusiastic supporter of the Second Amendment to occupy the Oval Office in our lifetimes”, said Chris Cox, NRA-ILA Executive Director. “President Trump’s Supreme Court appointments ensure that the Second Amendment will be respected for generations to come.”

“President Trump delivered on his promises by appointing judges who respect and value the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and in doing so helped ensure the freedom of generations of Americans. NRA members … thank him for his support for our right to keep and bear arms” stated Wayne LaPierre, NRA Executive V.P. and CEO.

Jason Ouimet, executive director of NRA-ILA, added: “President Trump has always stood tall for the constitutional freedoms in which his fellow NRA members believe. During COVID-19, President Trump declared firearms and ammunition retailers to be ‘critical infrastructure’, prompting states to reopen gun stores that had been forcibly closed. President Trump recognizes the Second Amendment is about liberties that belong to all Americans, and knows that our right to self-defense is non-negotiable. Join us on May 27 in Houston[.]”

NRA NRA-ILA leadership forum Houston 2022 annual meeting President donald trump ted cruz speaker

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May 15th, 2022

Sunday Gunday: 20 PPC Pistol — Great for Varmint Adventures

varmint 20 ppc rampro pistol John Seibel
varmint 20 ppc rampro pistol John Seibel

This week’s featured firearm belongs to John “SnakeEye” Seibel, founder of the VarmintsForFun website. In recent years, John has become a “true believer” in the little 20-Caliber cartridges. He says this light-recoiling 20 PPC, Rampro-actioned pistol is perfect for a quick shot on a critter, taken from the front seat of his truck. John tells us: “A long-range pistol is an ideal truck gun in my opinion. It stows in a small area and doesn’t take up the room a rifle does. Just keep ear protection near by at all times! I’ve taken varmints as far as 400+ yards with this 20 PPC pistol, so why would you need a rifle?”

Perspectives on Pistols for the Varmint Hunter

by John Seibel
I decided to try my hand at shooting varmints with a pistol one day when I grew tired of wrestling a rifle around in the truck for a quick shot. Many times when traveling around on the farm you’ll spy a groundhog or fox that usually isn’t more than 200 yards away. A single-shot pistol like the Thompson Contender could fit the bill. With its compact length, around 20 inches, a long-barrel pistol can lay on the truck’s passenger seat for easy access. I usually keep my two leather brick-style sandbags laying beside the console and seat. I have a box made from hard rubber that I lay across the top of the door. I then lay the two bags on top. This makes a nice platform to rest the pistol’s forearm. I like to use a forearm that is at least two inches wide. That lets the gun lay steady—almost like you are shooting from a bench rest. For the shooting hand, I prefer a pistol grip with finger grooves and a slight overhang or flare for the web of your hand.

As for optics, I tried long-eye-relief pistol scopes but they lacked the magnification you need for long-range target shooting or varminting. Those pistol scopes have really long eye-relief because they are designed to work with the pistol held at arm’s length. When shooting at the bench or from a truck that’s not what you want. By the time you find the target and get your eye in the exact location, the varmint has moved on or died of old age! After much fiddling around with pistol-type scopes, I finally decided to use rifle scopes on my long-range pistols. The minimum I use is a 4.5-14×40. Eye relief on a Leupold 4.5-14x40mm is about 3.5 inches at 4.5 power. Field of view is better with rifle scopes too and it’s easier to acquire your target. For this type of shooting a light-recoiling caliber is essential or you will have scope-eye bad! I currently have three long-range pistols and use them to shoot 17M4, 20 PPC, 22 BR, and .223 Rem. The featured gun may be the most accurate of my pistols, and your editor thinks it’s the most handsome of the three.

varmint 20 ppc rampro pistol John Seibel

The Rampro Pistol Project — Working with John Illum
A couple of years ago I called John Illum of Rampro about building the ultimate long-range pistol. It just so happens that John was a big time long-range pistol shooter. I told him that I wanted a gun that didn’t recoil badly and wouldn’t torque when fired. As I am a quadriplegic, with no grip in my hands, the gun had to handle well under recoil so I didn’t drop it. Recoil had to be straight back–no twisting.

Well Illum listened to me and came up with a gun that performs just the way I wanted. Illum suggested a rear grip stock of his own design. It has a 2.25″ wide forearm and a rear grip with a slight palm swell that fits your hand perfectly. Another nice feature is the finger grips. It has an extended overhang or “beavertail” that fits comfortably in the web of your hand. Of course it had to be walnut! I chose Rampro’s STP small action with a PPC bolt. His bolt uses a Sako-type extractor. The action is a single-shot. Being right-handed, I chose a right bolt, left port configuration. This works really well in a pistol. You can load with your left hand and see the round laying in the action–that’s what you want in a pistol without a safety.

Gun Specifications
John Illum’s Rampro actions are chrome-moly steel. Commonly you’d see them blued, but I had him put a brushed nickel finish on the action and rings. From a few feet away it looks like stainless. The trigger is Illum’s own design set at 8 ounces, and there’s no creep that I can detect. The action has Remington barrel threads and will accept Remington type triggers. One neat thing is that the action was milled with an integral recoil lug (much like the current Surgeon Action). And the bolt is milled all in one piece–no soldered-on handles. My only gripe with this bolt handle is that it could be a tad longer, but it still is manageable for a single-shot. You’ll also note how slick and streamlined the scope rings are. Illum made those as well. His rings mount to the action via two screws from the inside of the ring, a very elegant set-up for sure. (I currently have a 6.5-20x40mm Nikon scope on this gun. If I had to do this project over again the only thing I would change would be installing a 30mm scope because I like ‘em!).

The barrel is a PacNor Super-Match heavy taper with flutes milled by John Illum, who did all the gunsmithing on this pistol. Twist rate is 1 in 12 inches, with an 11° crown, polished to a mirror finish. The barrel was bead-blasted on the exterior to cut glare. I had Illum cut a 20 PPC minimum-spec chamber, with a .237″ neck. That way I don’t have to turn necks on the Lapua Brass (220 Russian necked down to .204). This is a varmint gun–there’s no need for turned necks. [Editor’s Note: Rampro is no longer in business. However, John tells us “I haven’t had any problems with the action so far. If I did, most competent gunsmiths could fix them easily.”]

Handgun Handling Tips
If you want to shoot a long-range pistol but have never have shot this kind of gun before, try to find a mentor — someone with a gun like this who can school you a bit in the correct technique. The first thing you notice is that you have no comb or cheek piece to help align your head and neck. And getting used to the optics takes some practice. Most people fit a pistol-type (long eye-relief) scope, but these can be awkward to use, and somewhat frustrating at first — the field of view is very restricted. Move your head very slightly and you can lose the sight picture completely. You can solve that problem by using a standard rifle scope, but that will put your head very close to the eye-piece — just three to four inches. With that arrangement, if you don’t hold the gun correctly … POW instant scope-eye!

Now once you get the hang of shooting a long-range pistol you will find it can be just as accurate as a rifle. But there is a trick to shooting them. Shooting a long-range pistol is a whole new world — you need to hold it just right. If you don’t let the gun roll back a little (i.e. if you grip too hard) you will get vertical stringing. I hold my hand against the back of the grip to guide the gun but let it almost free recoil. Looking at how compact the pistol is, you might think “Hey, this would make an ideal ‘walking-around’ varminter.” Well, that’s not really the case. For real precision shooting a solid benchrest type set-up is a must. You can attach a bipod to a long-range pistol, but you would need a flat surface. A fence-post top would work pretty well without a bipod if you carry a small light bag. Overall though, this type of pistol works best as a sandbag gun. For a walking-around gun, you’d be happier with a rifle I think.

Load Development and Accuracy
When I built this gun, Hornady had just released the 32gr V-Max (see footnote), a good match for my barrel’s 1:12″ twist. I choose the 20 PPC because of the very good Lapua brass (220 Russian parent case). I figured teaming Lapua brass with the little .204 bullet would offer excellent accuracy combined with very low recoil. My expectations were fulfilled. The brass proved to be excellent and the PacNor loved the little V-Max pills.

I tried quite a few different loads and most powders that I tried worked very well. These included: H322, Benchmark, AA 2460, and Reloader 7. Amazingly, with just 14″ of barrel, all of these powders delivered impressive velocities–ranging from 3914 to 4074 fps. I settled on 48 Harrell’s clicks of Accurate Arms (AA) 2460, which drives the 32gr V-Maxs to 3995 fps.

With AA 2460 the gun will shoot in the low 3s at 100 yards consistently — as long as I steer the gun right, which takes some practice. I think groups in the low 0.3″ range is excellent for a non-benchrest factory bullet. Despite having no buttstock to grab, recoil on my 20 PPC pistol is very minimal — it just rocks back into your hand. The main problem is to keep the scope from smacking you, since I used a rifle scope with short eye-relief. Muzzle flash and noise are tolerable but DO NOT shoot one of these without good ear protection. Your ears are very close to the muzzle.

I also have a 20 PPC rifle built on a BAT action with a Richard’s #008 laminated stock cut down in size. That gun’s 1:9″-twist Lilja barrel lets me shoot the Berger 50gr LTB bullets. In the wind, these perform quite a bit better than the 32s. My two favorite loads for the 50 grainers are: a) 26.0gr VV N135, CCI 450 primers, 3615 fps; and b) 27.3gr Hodgdon Varget, CCI 450s, 3595 fps. The BAT 20 PPC also shoots really well with the 40gr V-Max, pushed by N135 and Fed 205M primers.

Pistol Action Legal Issues
One important thing to remember if you build a pistol is to make sure the receiver came from the factory as a pistol and was titled as a pistol. Rifle actions are illegal to use as a pistol. Yes, that’s a nonsensical law, but it’s still on the books. You can use factory pistol actions such as the XP 100.

If you want a new custom action such as a BAT (my favorite), you can order it as a pistol action and when you get it, register it as a pistol. Note, in some states there may be additional fees, waiting periods, or restrictions for pistol actions (as opposed to rifle actions). Check your local laws before ordering the action.

Future Trends in Varmint Hunting — Plenty of Twenties

I think these sub-caliber rounds, both 20s and the 17s, are the future of recreational varminting, at least out to medium distances. The Twenties offer low recoil, excellent accuracy, and components keep getting better and better. The bullet-makers are finally making high-quality bullets in appropriate weights. Compared to something like a 22-250, I’ve noticed that my 20 PPC rifle has a lot less noise, a plus when you want to be quiet around other people and varmints.

The flat trajectory is another big advantage in the field. With the 20 PPC, zeroed at 100 yards, I can pretty much hold dead center and get hits out to 300 yards or so without touching the scope to add elevation. [Editor: The same is true with the 20 Practical cartridge, basically a .223 Rem necked down to .20 Caliber. It has proven very accurate and easy to tune.]

The 20-Caliber cartridges we have now, in particular the 20 PPC and 20 BR, are very well-refined. You don’t have to do a lot of tuning or tinkering to have a very accurate, effective varmint-slayer. In fact, if I could dream up a signature “20 VFF” (Varmints For Fun) cartridge it would basically be the 20 PPC. In truth, nearly any of the popular 17- or 20-Caliber cartridges will perform well if you start with top-quality brass. The sub-calibers have less recoil and burn less powder, and there are very good components for most varmint and target-shooting applications. To me it seems that these small calibers work so well because of good components, low recoil, and efficient cartridge designs (particularly in the VarTarg and PPC cases).

varmint 20 ppc rampro pistol John Seibel

WARNING: For your own safety, ALWAYS reduce all starting charges by 10% and work up carefully! Ambient temperature changes, powder lot variations, and differences in barrel friction can result in significantly increased pressures.

20 PPC LOAD MAP
Bullet GR Maker Powder Charge Primer Case Velocity
fps
Barrel
Twist
Comments
32 Hornady
V-Max
H322 27.6 Rem 7½ Lapua 4000 Lilja 1:12 WarrenB Form Load
32 Hornady
V-Max
AA 2460 29.5 Rem 7½ Lapua 3995 PacNor 1:12 SnakeEye
Pistol Load
32 Hornady
V-Max
H4198 25.1 CCI BR4 Lapua 4222 PacNor 1:12 A. Boyechko Load
39 Sierra
BlitzKing
H322 26.0 Rem 7½ Lapua 3700 Lilja 1:12 WarrenB Load
39 Sierra
BlitzKing
VV N540 28.8 CCI BR4 SAKO 4064 PacNor 1:12 D.Moore, Low 2s
40 Hornady
V-Max
VV N135 27.8 Fed 205m Lapua 3950 Lilja 1:9 SnakeEye Load
50 Berger
LTB
VV N135 26.0 CCI 450 Lapua 3615 Lilja 1:9 SnakeEye Load
50 Berger
LTB
Varget 27.3 CCI 450 Lapua 3595 Lilja 1:9 SnakeEye Load

Footnote: When first manufactured, the small Hornady 20-Caliber V-Max bullet was actually 33 grains, not 32 grains as sold currently. I still have some of the 33-grainers. I’ve observed no functional difference between the 33s and the current 32-grainers.

Permalink - Articles, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hunting/Varminting, Tech Tip 1 Comment »
May 15th, 2022

Three Generations Shoot Together — Grandfather, Father, & Son

father son grandfather young boy benchrest 6mmBR Cooper Montana varminter

We saw a heart-warming post on the Benchrest Shooting and Gunsmithing Facebook Group. Proud father Robb W. explained how three generations of his family — father, son, and grandfather — all recently attended a rifle match together. That’s terrific — three generations on the firing line. But to make things even more special, this was the 10-year-old boy’s very first match. The young man shot a 240-5X. Father Robb was delighted with his son’s performance: “Proud Dad day for sure!”.

father son grandfather young boy benchrest 6mmBR Cooper Montana varminter
We are glad to see the young man uses quality eye and ear protection. Good habit to start.

The rifle used by the young fellow is a Cooper Montana Varminter, chambered in 6mmBR Norma. That happens to be the same cartridge that inspired this Editor to start this website. Before we became AccurateShooter.com, our original site was called 6mmbr.com. You can still find great content on that site, including 100 in-depth Gun of the Week features. 6mmBR.com was launched 18 years ago.

father son grandfather young boy benchrest 6mmBR Cooper Montana varminter

One facebook poster noted: “Keep him shooting. I can tell you from experience, he will be the best shooting partner you will ever have.”

Another reader wrote wisely: “Good for him — Remember that he is the future.”

Permalink - Articles, Shooting Skills Post comment »
May 15th, 2022

Protect Firearms with Bore-Stores and 3-Layer Storage Bags

Bore-Store Gun Sacks

Our take on Bore-Store Gun sleeves is simple: They work great, so buy them and use them — for ALL your valuable firearms.

These thick, synthetic-fleece sacks cushion your guns, preventing nicks and scratches. The breathable fabric wicks away moisture, and the fibers are coating with corrosion inhibitors. I personally use Bore-Stores for in-safe storage with all my guns, and I have never had one of my guns rust inside a Bore-Store, even when I lived a stone’s throw from the ocean.

Bore-Stores are offered in a wide range of sizes that fit everything from a Snub-nosed revolver to a 33″-barrelled Black Powder Rifle. Bore-Stores can be purchased for $9.97 – $29.97 from Borestores.com. For most scoped rifles, we recommend the 10″x46″ SCR-1 case. The Bore-Store manufacturer, Big Spring Enterprises will also craft custom sizes on request. For a long-barreled F-Class or ELR rig you may need a custom length. Or you can remove the scope and use the 7″x60″ MUS-1 Musket Bore-Store.

Bore-Store Handgun Cases | Bore-Store Rifle Cases | Bore-Store Shotgun Cases

Get Your Guns Out of Foam-lined Cases — They Are Rust Magnets
Just about the worst thing you can do for long-term storage (short of leaving your rifle outside in the rain) is to store firearms in tight, foam-padded cases. The foam in these cases actually collects and retains moisture from the air, acting as the perfect breeding ground for rust. Even in warm summer months, humid air can leave moisture in the foam.

Foam-lined hard caseRemember, those plastic-shelled cases with foam interiors are for transport, not for long-term storage. Don’t repeat the mistake of a wealthy gun collector I know. He stored four valuable Colt Single Action Army (SAA) revolvers in individual foam-padded cases, and locked these away in his gun safe. A year later, every one of his precious SAAs had rusted, some badly.

Consider Military-Style, Triple-Layer Bags for Long-Term Storage
While we prefer Bore-Stores for regularly-used guns, if you have heirloom firearms that will be kept in storage for very long periods without seeing any use, you may want to grease them up and place them in the thin, but rugged three-layer storage bags sold by Brownells. The bags are made from a three-layer laminate of polyester, aluminum, and polyethylene film, with a shiny silver exterior. Though the laminate is thin, the Brownells storage bags are puncture-resistant, and have a 0% moisture transmission rating so moisture can’t get inside. These bags are also resistant to petroleum-based chemicals and they won’t break down even in contact with soil or moisture.

3-layer Brownells storage bagHere’s one VITAL bit of advice for using these bags. Be absolutely sure, before you seal up the bags, that your guns are DRY and that all metal surfaces have been coated with an effective anti-corrosive, such as BoeShield T9 or Eezox. Brownells’ storage bags are inexpensive. A three-pak of 12″x 60″ rifle sacks (item 083-055-003WB) costs just $19.99 — under seven bucks a gun. That’s cheap insurance for rifles and shotguns that may cost thousands of dollars.

NOTE: If the Brownells bags are out of stock, consider the similar Dry-Packs 12″x65″ 3-layer gun storage bag. This features a handy Zip-lock closure and costs $16.99 on Amazon (see below).

Dry-Packs storage Gun Sacks

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May 14th, 2022

Saturday at the Movies: Gun Safes — Features and Installation

Gunsafe gun safe saturday movies video showcase vault security modular

Today’s Saturday Showcase covers gun safes. Every firearms owner should have a secure, quality gun safe with ample capacity. There are numerous choices in gun safes — but we have one key bit of advice — buy BIGGER than you think you need, because your gun collection will likely grow over time. Also you should consider the fire rating of your safe. There are other key factors to consider, such as wall thickness, lock type, shelf and storage layout, and humidity control. We recommend that all Bulletin readers read our detailed, Gun Safe Buyers Guide. This in-depth 9400-word article covers ALL these topics:

Anti-Corrosion
Budget Safes
Bolt Layout
Door Seals
Fire Proofing
Handgun Storage
Hinges
Humidity Control
Installation Tips
Interior Layout
Interior Lighting
Locks–Dial vs. Digital
Modular Safes
Rotary Racks
Size and Weight
Temperature Control
Wall Thickness
Water Proofing

Technical Features of Gun Safes — What You Need to Know

This is a very sensible, informative video that examines the technical features of gun safes. You’ll learn about the steel “gauge” or thickness, the different types of hinges, lock controls, and fire-proofing options. We think anyone contemplating purchase of a large home safe should watch this video, prepared by a respected safe retailer in Las Vegas.

Assembly of SnapSafe Titan XXL Double Door Modular Safe

In this video Gavin Gear of UltimateReloader.com shows the unpacking and assembly of a large, twin-door SnapSafe modular safe. This video shows how individual panels are assembled one by one, and how the twin doors are attached. Gavin also shows the process of installing the interior insulation panels which provide basic fire protection. Remarkably, this entire XXL modular safe can be put together with simple tools in less than an hour. SEE Full Article HERE.


Gunsafe gun safe saturday movies video showcase vault security modular

Features of a Quality Safe under $1000

Even if you already have a safe, this video is well worth watching. The host shows a variety of accessories and upgrades that all gun safe owners should consider. The host explains why you should have a dehumidifier or Golden Rod. He also shows how to install handy interior lights that activate automatically when the door is opened.

The Gun Vault — The Next Step Beyond a Jumbo Gun Safe

If you have a very large gun collection and are building a new custom home, you may want to consider a Gun Vault. This is essentially a large, secure room, with a very heavy door and thick walls. In this interesting video, Atlas builds a large walk-in gun vault using the Gallow Tech Shelving System and a Fort Knox Gun Vault door.

After the Fire — What Actually Happens in a Burned Safe

In this video, the hosts open a “fireproof” gun safe that went through an actual house fire. See what happens when a gun safe that is supposed to be fireproof actually is exposed to a major fire. The results are surprising to say the least. This video shows that you need to do your homework before buying a “fireproof” safe. Understand how the fire rating systems work, and learn how the interior materials and construction make a big different in real world fire protection.

Mechanical Locks vs. Electronic Locks — What You Need to Know

One important decision when buying a gun safe is the choice of locking mechanism. Should you go with a mechanical lock or an electronic lock? There are pros and cons to both dial locks and e-locks, and as long as you get a quality lock, neither is a bad choice. To help you make your decision, This video explains the differences between the two, and reasons why you might choose one over the other.

How to Assemble a Modular Safe with Simple Tools

For gun owners who move frequently, or who may live in an upstairs apartment or condo, a modular safe makes sense. Steelhead Outdoors, based in Minnesota, offers three different safes: Nomad 26, 32, and Nomad 38. The video below shows how to assemble a Steelhead Outdoors Nomad series safe. If you have basic skills, these safes can be assembled easily in 60-90 minutes. Steelhead recommends having two people to do the job. The entire safe ships in four (4) boxes. Wrenches are included with the safe.

This time-lapse video shows the entire process of assembling the safe, start to finish.

Guide to Quick Access Handgun Safes

A quick access safe can keep your pistol secure, but also readily accessible. But not all of these devices are created equal. This video explains the features you need in a small pistol safe. The video also examines the pros and cons of seven different handgun safes. We recommend that you do NOT keep your handgun safe in plain view, such as on a bedside table. There are other locations where you still have quick access, without tempting home intruders.

Wireless Hygrometer Reports Temperature and Humidity Inside Safes

The Hornady Security® Wireless Hygrometer monitors temperature and humidity in real-time, all without opening the gun safe. The wireless hygrometer employs a remote sensor inside your safe, which measures temperature and humidity data. This data is then sent to an external base display. Wireless technology eliminates the need to open the safe and check the storage environment, preventing temperature and humidity spikes from the outside air.

The display features a large touchscreen that shows current high/low data from both the base and remote units in Fahrenheit or Celsius. The hygrometer pairs with Hornady Security’s in-safe dehumidifiers to combat oxidation-causing moisture.

Gun Safe Installation Recommendations

Every safe, when possible, should be anchored in place with heavy-duty fasteners. Ideally, use multiple bolts in the bottom of the safe, anchored to concrete or solid foundation. Choose the appropriate lag bolts or anchors for the material below your safe. If you can’t mount to the floor, bolt the safe to wall studs. You can locate the position of the studs with an inexpensive electronic “Stud Sensor” available at home supply stores.

Check the thickness of your safe floor. If the steel on the bottom of your safe is fairly thin, place a steel backing strip between the bolt heads and the safe bottom. (Large washers will work, but a backing strip is better.) Without such reinforcement, the bolt heads may pull right through thin-gauge steel if the safe is rocked, or levered from the bottom with a pry-bar.

Locate your safe in the corner of a room or in a recess that blocks access to one or more sides of the safe. On many gun safes, the steel on the top, sides, and rear is thinner than on the door. Blocking access to the sides makes it much more difficult to use power tools on the sides, where the safe is most vulnerable. It’s also wise to place the safe in a relatively tight space with limited room to maneuver. Anything that makes the safe harder to move helps deter would-be thieves.

Many people place their safe in a garage or basement. That’s not necessarily a bad idea, but people also tend to store their tools in the same locations. Don’t store your power tools next to the safe. One safe-maker told us how a customer’s safe was defeated using the owners’ own cutting torch which was stored right next to the safe!

Inspect the area around the safe. Avoid locations where there are a lot of wood beams, paint cans, or other combustible material nearby. In the event of a serious house-fire, these items will fuel the flames, increasing the likelihood that items inside your safe will be heat-damaged. Chris Luchini, co-author of Rec.Gun’s Guide to Gun Safes, offers some practical advice: “Get an alarm system. If the burglars hear an alarm go off, they are less likely to stick round to finish the job. Alarms on both the house and the safe area are a good idea.”

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May 14th, 2022

M1A Tech Tips and Springfield M1A Match at Camp Perry

Springfield M1A gunsmith armorer's course AGI

Do you own a Springfield M1A (or wish you did)? Then you should watch this 5-minute video from the American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI). This video shows the basics of the operation of the popular M1A rifle, the civilian version of the military M14. In this video, gunsmith John Bush field-strips the M1A and shows how the bolt, op rod, and trigger group fits together and operates. This video contains excerpts from the M1A Rifle Armorer’s Course, AGI Course #1584. The full Armorer’s Course is available on DVD from www.AmericanGunsmith.com.

Watch Highlights of AGI M1A Rifle Armorer’s Course:

Springfield M1A rifle camp perry m14 .308 win AGI

Springfield M1A gunsmith armorer's course AGI

2022 CMP Springfield M1A Match at Camp Perry

The 15th annual Springfield Armory M1A Match will take place during the 2022 CMP National Rifle Matches. The CMP will host the event on Sunday, August 7, 2022, the same weekend as the Garand/Springfield/Vintage Military matches. Competitors of all experience levels are encouraged to bring their M1A rifles to Camp Perry and compete. CLICK HERE for Online REGISTRATION. The match is open to all individuals ages 12 and above. For more information contact the CMP at competitions@thecmp.org or call 419-635-2141 ext. 724 or 714.

Springfield M1A match high power rifle

The Springfield Armory M1A match began with one man’s idea and passion. Springfield Armory’s Mike Doy witnessed the waning of classic M1 Garand and M1A rifles from the competitive High Power firing lines. “I really wanted to get those M1A rifles out of safes and closets and back out onto the field. So 11 years ago, I promoted the idea of running an M1A-specific match at Camp Perry. That first year we had over 600 competitors and spectators.” Now the match offers some of the biggest pay-outs at Camp Perry. In recent years, Springfield Armory has donated over $25,000 worth of cash and prizes, including a $2,000 cash award to the overall winner.

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May 14th, 2022

Can’t Find Bullets? Try American Bullet Company and Save Money

Factory seconds american bullet company .22 6mm .243 .308 discount bullets creedmoor sports

We’ve been hearing that top-name bullets are in short supply right now, particularly in popular .224, 6mm and .308 calibers. Here’s a new option for HPBT bullets that can serve for practice and local club matches. Creedmoor Sports now offers American Bullet Company bullets. These are “seconds” from a major bullet-maker, but they can be a good choice for competitors who want to spend more time on the range perfecting their position, trigger pull, and wind-reading skills.

Creedmoor Sports states: “American Bullet Company bullets technically are factory seconds, and are priced accordingly to provide more range time without breaking the bank. But, since Distinguished Rifleman Scott Young recently shot scores of 597 and 600 out of 600, with very high X counts, it’s easy to see they do not sacrifice on performance.” You can buy these bullets and save up to 50% compared to first-run offerings. Then you may want to sort the bullets by weight and/or base-to ogive measurement.

We think these are a good choice for service rifle shooters as well as M1 Garand, M1A, and 1903 Springfield shooters running .30-06 or .308 Win chamberings. And, at just $22.95 per 100 and $104.95 per 500, the 52gr and 55gr .224 bullets will also work well for high-volume varmint shooters.

These bullets are available in a .224, .243 (6mm), and .308 calibers in a variety of bullet weights. Choose 100-ct, 250-ct, or 500-ct boxes.

.224 Caliber: 52gr, 55gr, 69gr, 77gr
.243 (6mm) Caliber: 107gr
.308 Caliber: 125gr, 168gr, 175gr

Factory seconds american bullet company .22 6mm .243 .308 discount bullets creedmoor sports

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May 13th, 2022

Inaugural SIG Freedom Days Event Draws Over 4000 Participants

Ben Avery Sig Sauer Freedom days shooting event

SIG Freedom Days — one of the biggest shooting events in America — was a huge success last weekend. Over 4000 firearms fans attended the first-ever SIG Freedom Days fun shoot/gear demo at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility in Phoenix, Arizona.

Ben Avery Sig Sauer Freedom days shooting event

Over the weekend of May 6-8, 2022, 4000+ guests participated in the inaugural SIG Freedom Days — a unique, consumer-focused shooting experience. Attendees had the opportunity to shoot a wide variety of SIG Sauer firearms including the new SPECTRE series guns, the P320/P320-M17/P320-M18, the EDC P365 series, and the MCX rifle in multiple configurations. Participants also enjoyed an exclusive first look at the soon-to-be-released CROSS PRS and P320 X10. Additionally, many attendees were able to shoot the SIG SAUER Next Generation Squad Weapons: the MCX-SPEAR (XM5) and the SIG-LMG (XM250).

The event included live daily demonstrations from Team SIG’s pro shooters: Max Michel, Dan Horner, Lena Miculek, and Jerry Miculek. There were also machine gun demonstrations, K9 demonstrations and more. But the big attraction was being able to shoot a variety of SIG Sauer firearms. The $75/day fee included ammunition for pistols, rifles, and shotguns.

SIG FREEDOM DAYS Participants Were Able to:

— Shoot nearly 50 new and existing SIG SAUER firearms
— Learn from world-class SIG SAUER Academy Instructors
— Shoot Mossberg Shotguns and Xpedition Archery Crossbows
— Shoot the SIG SAUER “Next Generation” Machine Gun (additional fee)
— See stage presentations by pro shooters, industry leaders, and personalities
— Watch live demos by Team SIG pros Max Michel, Dan Horner, Lena Miculek, and Jerry Miculek.

Ben Avery Sig Sauer Freedom days shooting event

“As a company we challenged ourselves to… bring our brand right to the consumer outside of the typical tradeshow and retail environment and offer enthusiasts, second amendment advocates, [and] SIG lovers an authentic hands-on total SIG experience. SIG Freedom Days connected the consumer with the product in a first-of-its-kind range event…”, stated Tom Taylor, SIG SAUER Chief Marketing Officer & Executive VP, Commercial Sales.

SIG Freedom Days major sponsors included USCCA,, Mossberg Shotguns, XPEDITION Archery, 5.11 Tactical, Guns.com, Fieldcraft Survival, and Black Rifle Coffee Company. Additional sponsors included Arizona Fish & Game, Hogue Knives, Silencer Shop, Tactacam, and Timney Triggers. Non-profit partners included the Best Defense Foundation and the Firearms Policy Coalition.

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May 13th, 2022

Five FUN FREE Printable Pistol Targets

Printable PDF Pistol Target free Jessie Harrison

While AccurateShooter.com focuses primarily on rifle disciplines, we know that most of our regular readers also own handguns. It’s fun to shoot pistols, both outdoors and indoors. With a short site radius, and the snap of pistol recoil, handguns can be challenging — but that’s part of the fun. We enjoy shooting revolvers and semi-auto pistols at distances from 25 feet to 50 yards. Here are some fun targets you can download and print for FREE. These should provide a fun challenge for your next handgun sessions.

1. Patriotic Stars Target with Three Score Values

Here’s a fun Patriotic Stars Target created by the NSSF for National Shooting Sports Month. Aim for the stars. The red stars are worth 3 points, the blue stars are 5 points, and the smallest white stars are worth 10 points. After aiming for the one-color stars, try to hit the center red, white, and blue star for added fun. You can also use this target with rifles at longer ranges.

nssf pistol stars stripes target fun PDF

2. Red Center Pistol Target

Here’s a NRA-type target for pistol shooting. The bright red center helps when shooting indoors because well-placed bullet holes are much more visible. This target includes data entry boxes to record gun type, score, and load data. This Red Center Target is one of many good free targets available at Targets4free.com.

targets4free free target NRA pistol red center rings

3. NSSF Billiards Table Target

shooting paper printable billiard cue ball stripes solids target

This Billiards Table Target offers 15 brightly-colored numbered balls with the cue ball at the bottom. Aim for the numbers, shooting 1-15 in sequence, or alternate between stripes and solids. You can also draw an “X” on the white cue ball (or attach a paster), and use that to set your zero. This target is fun for shooting outdoors with rifles at 50 or 100 yards or indoors with pistols.

4. Tic-Tac-Toe Fun Game Target

shooting paper printable fly flies target

This Tic-Tac-Toe Shooting Game Target lets you challenge your shooting buddies at the range. One player can shoot the red triangles, while the other shoots the white zones, taking turns. You proceed just like a regular Tic-Tac-Toe game, alternating shots, with the goal of getting three of the same color in a row. This is a fun game for a parent and a young family member. You’ll find other fun targets on Targets4free.com.

5. NRA Dartboard Target with Five Bullseyes

There are many dartboard-style targets available, but this one has the extra feature of FIVE notable black bullseye aiming points. That makes this NRA Dartboard Target quite good for handgun shooting. NOTE: You’ll want to set the target PDF file to print in landscape (horizontal) mode to get the best results with 8.5×11″ paper.

NRA dartboard target with bullseyes

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May 13th, 2022

NRA Annual Convention in Houston Is Just Two Weeks Away

NRA Annual meetings exhibits houston Texas TX May memorial day 2022

NRA Annual meetings exhibits houston Texas TX May memorial day 2022The NRA 2022 Annual Meetings & Exhibits will take place at the George R. Brown Convention Center May 27-29 in Houston, Texas. The Exhibit Hall is open all three days and will showcase over 14 acres of the latest guns and gear from the most popular companies in the industry. From entertainment to special events, it’s all happening in Houston over Memorial Day weekend.

There is FREE Admission for NRA members and their immediate family. On-site walk-up registration is available for NRA members and you can also join NRA on-site to access the show. CLICK HERE to book hotel rooms with optimal locations and special NRA discounted rates.

Admission to the event is FREE for NRA members and their immediate family (some special events do require paid tickets). You can register on-site, as Advanced Registration has now closed for the 2022 event. Walk-up registration will be available on-site for members and you can join NRA on-site as well.

Get the latest information on the 151th NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits at NRAAM.org.

NOTE: Monday, May 30th is Memorial Day, a holiday for most workers. So, if you decide to attend the NRA Annual Meetings, you can come back on Monday without missing a day of work.

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May 12th, 2022

9th Circuit Strikes Down California Age-Based Semi-automatic Rifle Ban

9th circuit jones bonta rifle second amendment semi-auto California
California young adults (18 to 20 years) can now own a semi-auto rifle such as this Browning for hunting, self defense, and target shooting. The 9th Circuit struck down a California law as unconstitutional.

Report from Second Amendment Foundation (SAF)
On May 11, 2022, A three-judge panel for the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals struck down a California prohibition on sales of semi-automatic rifles to 18- to 20-year-old young adults. The 9th Circuit then remanded the case, Jones v. Bonta, back to the District Court for further proceedings. This ruling is a major victory for firearms rights. The fight against California’s unconstitutional restriction was led by a coalition of Second Amendment advocate groups.

9th circuit jones bonta rifle second amendment semi-auto CaliforniaIn this legal action, the Second Amendment Foundation (SAF), was joined by the Firearms Policy Coalition, Inc., Firearms Policy Foundation, Calguns Foundation, Poway Weapons and Gear and PWG Range, North County Shooting Center, Inc, Beebe Family Arms and Munitions, and three private citizens, including Matthew Jones for whom the case is named. Download Jones v. Bonta PDF.

The majority opinion was written by Judge Ryan Nelson and joined by Judge Kenneth Lee, both Donald Trump appointees, and in part by Judge Sidney Stein from the Southern District of New York, a Bill Clinton appointee. Judge Stein also dissented in part.

Writing for the majority, Judge Nelson observed, “(T)he Second Amendment protects the right of young adults to keep and bear arms, which includes the right to purchase them. The district court reasoned otherwise and held that the laws did not burden Second Amendment rights at all: that was legal error…(T)he district court erred by applying intermediate scrutiny, rather than strict scrutiny, to the semiautomatic centerfire rifle ban. And even under intermediate scrutiny, this ban likely violates the Second Amendment because it fails the ‘reasonable fit’ test.”

“We are delighted with the opinion,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “The court majority rightly recognized that delaying the exercise of a right until age 21 does irreparable harm. It also applied strict scrutiny to the semi-auto ban.”

Gottlieb noted this ruling could have an impact on another case challenging a similar prohibition in Washington State, which is also part of the Ninth Circuit. There, the prohibition was adopted via a citizen initiative in 2018, and was challenged by SAF and the National Rifle Association. ABA Journal related article.

“America would not exist without the heroism of the young adults who fought and died in our revolutionary army,” wrote Judge Ryan Nelson in his majority opinion.

“Today, we reaffirm that our Constitution still protects the right that enabled their sacrifice: the right of young adults to keep and bear arms,” Nelson wrote.

Jones v. Bonta, 9th Circuit Ruling:

Jones v. Bonta by AmmoLand Shooting Sports News

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May 12th, 2022

Florida Has 2.5 Million Carry Permits — 14% of Adult Floridians

Florida concealed weapons NRA-ILA constitutional carry permitless second amendment

Story based on Report from NRA-ILA
The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services reports that, as of April 30, 2022, Florida now has over 2.5 million firearms permit holders. This number has steadily risen every year and is more than double the total from 2012. The 2.5 million permits represents 11% of Florida’s 22 million residents, and 14% of all adult Floridians (18 and over). This comes after Florida Governor Ron DeSantis announced last week that he plans to sign Constitutional Carry legislation into law while he is Governor.

Twenty-five states now have permitless or “Constitutional Carry” in the United States. Four states, including Florida’s neighbor states Georgia and Alabama, enacted Constitutional Carry laws this year. Officially, half of the nation’s 50 states now recognizes the right of law-abiding adults to carry a concealed firearm without first having to obtain government permission and pay a tax. This ensures that citizens have the right to self-defense without government red tape or delays.

NRA-ILA constitutional carry permitless second amendment

The NRA-ILA will continue to update members and supporters on this and other Second Amendment issues in the Sunshine State. Visit www.NRAILA.org for more information.

More Information for Gun Owners with Carry Permits

Panteo Productions has released a series of FREE instructional videos for handgun owners. Co-sponsored by Ruger and Federal, the Handgun 101 video series covers handgun and ammunition nomenclature, handgun functions, basic shooting skills, and the key considerations for concealed carry. The three-part series includes: 1. Intro to Handguns; 2. A Concealed Carry Permit; and 3. Intro to Concealed Carry. All three videos provide valuable information on gun handling and legal issues. These videos are featured on the Panteao website along with other free videos, such as On the Range with Larry Vickers.

Panteo Handgun video concealed carry pistol free

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May 12th, 2022

Good Resources for Do-It-Yourself AR-Platform Rifle Projects

AR15 Varmint rifle AR gunsmithing robert whitley
AR15 Varmint rifle AR gunsmithing robert whitley

AR15 construction guideMany of our readers use AR-type rifles for Service Rifle matches, varmint hunting, 3-Gun competition, or defensive use. AR-platform rifles can be configured in a multitude of ways to suit the application. But if you plan to put together your own purpose-built AR rifle, how do you get started?

For AR Do-It-Yourselfers, we suggest reading the late Glen Zediker’s book, the Competitive AR-15 Builders Guide. Following on Zediker’s The Competitive AR15: Ultimate Technical Guide, the Builders Guide provides step-by-step instructions that will help non-professional “home builders” assemble a competitive match or varmint rifle. This book isn’t for everyone — you need some basic gun assembly experience and an aptitude for tools. But the Competitive AR-15 Builders’ Guide provides a complete list of the tools you’ll need for the job, and Zediker outlines all the procedures to build an AR-15 from start to finish.

One of our Forum members who purchased the AR-15 Builders Guide confirms it is a great resource: “Much like any of the books Mr. Zediker puts out this one is well thought-out and is a no nonsense approach to AR building. I can not stress how helpful this book is from beginner to expert level.”

Along with assembly methods, this book covers parts selection and preparation, not just hammers and pins. Creedmoor Sports explains: “Knowing how to get what you want, and be happy with the result, is truly the focus of this book. Doing it yourself gives you a huge advantage. The build will honestly have been done right, and you’ll know it! Little problems will have been fixed, function and performance enhancements will have been made, and the result is you’ll have a custom-grade rifle without paying custom-builder prices.” Other good resources for AR projects is Gunsmithing the AR: The Bench Manual, and the Building Your AR from Scratch DVD.

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May 11th, 2022

When Scopes Go Bad — How to Diagnose Rifle Optics Issues

Riflescope Repairs

Riflescopes are mechanical contraptions. One of the sad realities about precision shooting is that, sooner or later, you will experience a scope failure. If you’re lucky it won’t happen in the middle of a National-level competition. And hopefully the failure will be dramatic and unmistakable so you won’t spend months trying to isolate the issue. Unfortunately, scope problems can be erratic or hard to diagnose. You may find yourself with unexplained flyers or a slight degradation of accuracy and you won’t know how to diagnose the problem. And when a 1/8th-MOA-click scope starts failing, it may be hard to recognize the fault immediately, because the POI change may be slight.

How to Diagnose Scope Problems

When you see your groups open up, there’s a very good chance this is due to poor wind-reading, or other “driver error”. But my experience showed me that sometimes scopes do go bad. When your accuracy degrades without any other reasonable explanation, the cause of the problem may well be your optics. Here are some of the “symptoms” of scope troubles:

1. Large shot-to-shot variance in Point of Impact with known accurate loads.
2. Uneven tracking (either vertical or horizontal).
3. Change of Point of Impact does not correspond to click inputs.
4. Inability to zero in reasonable number of shots.
5. Unexpected changes in elevation click values (compared to previous known distance come-ups).
6. Visible shift in reticle from center of view.
7. Changed “feel” or resistance when clicking; or uneven click-to-click “feel”.
8. Inability to set parallax to achieve sharpness.
9. Turrets or other controls feel wobbly or loose.
10. Internal scope components rattle when gun is moved.

Scope Failure mechanical Point of Impact

Even expensive scopes can fail, or start to perform erratically — and that can happen without warning, or for no apparent reason. Here are some signs that you may be having scope issues.

1. Click count has changed significantly from established zero at known range.
2. Noticeably different click “feel” as you rotate turrets, or turrets feel wobbly.
3. Inability to set Adjustable Objective or side focus to get sharp target image.
4. Shot Point of Impact is completely different than click value after elevation/windage change. For example, when you dial 2 MOA “up” but you observe a 6 MOA rise in POI.

When An Expensive Scope Goes Bad — Crazy Vertical Case Study

A few seasons back, this editor had a major-brand 8-25x50mm scope go bad. How did I know I had a problem? Well the first sign was a wild “drop-down” flyer at a 600-yard match. After shooting a two-target relay, I took a look at my targets. My first 5-shot group had five shots, fairly well centered, in about 2.2″. Pretty good. Everything was operating fine. Then I looked at the second target. My eye was drawn to four shots, all centered in the 10 Ring, measuring about 2.4″. But then I saw the fifth shot. It was a good 18″ low, straight down from the X. And I really mean straight down — if you drew a plumb line down from the center of the X, it would pass almost through the fifth shot.

Is My Scope Actually Malfunctioning or Is This Driver Error?
That was disconcerting, but since I had never had any trouble with this scope before, I assumed it was a load problem (too little powder?), or simple driver error (maybe I flinched or yanked the trigger?). Accordingly, I didn’t do anything about the scope, figuring the problem was me or the load.

Problems Reappear — Huge POI Swings Affirm This Scope is Toast
But, at the next range session, things went downhill fast. In three shots, I did manage to get on steel at 600, with my normal come-up for that distance. Everything seemed fine. So then I switched to paper. We had a buddy in the pits with a walkie-talkie and he radioed that he couldn’t see any bullet holes in the paper after five shots. My spotter said he thought the bullets were impacting in the dirt, just below the paper. OK, I thought, we’ll add 3 MOA up (12 clicks), and that should raise POI 18″ and I should be on paper, near center. That didn’t work — now the bullets were impacting in the berm ABOVE the target frame. The POI had changed over 48″ (8 MOA). (And no I didn’t click too far — I clicked slowly, counting each click out loud as I adjusted the elevation.) OK, to compensate now I took off 8 clicks which should be 2 MOA or 12″. No joy. The POI dropped about 24″ (4 MOA) and the POI also moved moved 18″ right, to the edge of the target.

Riflescope RepairsFor the next 20 shots, we kept “chasing center” trying to get the gun zeroed at 600 yards. We never did. After burning a lot of ammo, we gave up. Before stowing the gun for the trip home, I dialed back to my 100-yard zero, which is my normal practice (it’s 47 clicks down from 600-yard zero). I immediately noticed that the “feel” of the elevation knob didn’t seem right. Even though I was pretty much in the center of my elevation (I have a +20 MOA scope mount), the clicks felt really tight — as they do when you’re at the very limit of travel. There was a lot of resistance in the clicks and they didn’t seem to move the right amount.

And it seemed that I’d have four or five clicks that were “bunched up” with a lot of resistance, and then the next click would have almost no resistance and seem to jump. It’s hard to describe, but it was like winding a spring that erratically moved from tight to very loose.

At this point I announced to my shooting buddies: “I think the scope has taken a dump.” I let one buddy work the elevation knob a bit. “That feels weird,” he said: “the clicks aren’t consistent… first it doesn’t want to move, then the clicks jump too easily.”

Convinced that I had a real problem, the scope was packed up and shipped to the manufacturer. So, was I hallucinating? Was my problem really just driver error? I’ve heard plenty of stories about guys who sent scopes in for repair, only to receive their optics back with a terse note saying: “Scope passed inspection and function test 100%. No repairs needed”. So, was my scope really FUBAR? You bet it was. When the scope came back from the factory, the Repair Record stated that nearly all the internal mechanicals had been replaced or fixed:

“Replaced Adjustment Elevation; Replaced Adjustment Windage; Reworked Erector System; Reworked Selector; Reworked Parallax Control.”

Source of Problem Unknown, but I Have a Theory
Although my scope came with a slightly canted reticle from the factory, it had otherwise functioned without a hitch for many years. I was able to go back and forth between 100-yard zero and 600-yard zero with perfect repeatability for over five years. I had confidence in that scope. Why did it fail when it did? My theory is side-loading on the turrets. I used to carry the gun in a thick soft case. I recently switched to an aluminum-sided hard case that has pretty dense egg-crate foam inside. I noticed it took some effort to close the case, though it was more than big enough, width-wise, to hold the gun. My thinking is that the foam wasn’t compressing enough, resulting in a side-load on the windage turret when the case was clamped shut. This is just my best guess; it may not be the real source of the problem. Remember, as I explained in the beginning of this story, sometimes scopes — just like any mechanical system — simply stop working for no apparent reason.

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May 11th, 2022

Travel Guides for Gun Owners — FREE State by State Booklets

Lawshield Travel guide state national PDF

LawShield, America’s largest provider of Legal Defense for Self Defense® coverage, offers a National Travel Guide for Gun Owners and state-specific Travel Guides for Gun Owners. These guides feature practical information for people traveling through nearly every state in the USA.

State-Specific Travel Guides — Access for FREE
State-specific Travel Guides and a National Travel Guide for Gun Owners can be accessed for FREE on the the U.S. LawShield website. For planning future travel, bookmark Resources.uslawshield.com/travel-guide,

Lawshield Travel guide state national PDF

Lawshield Travel guide state national PDFAccording to Kirk Evans, President of U.S. LawShield, “Because there are so many details for people to understand before they leave home, we developed state-specific guides to help folks stay on the right side of the law. Take the time to learn the laws before hitting the road because they are not the same everywhere. Don’t wait until after the fact to plan for your guns when preparing for your trip.”

Travel Guide for Gun Owners Topics:
Permits/licenses recognized by specific states
State laws you should know, including vehicle carry, duty to notify law enforcement, and open and concealed carry laws
Where you can legally carry your gun
Federal laws you should know
Carrying in National Parks
Transfer of firearms
Traveling from state to state and the Safe Passage provision
Flying with a firearm, including TSA requirement warnings and how to pack ammunition
Driving with a firearm

See Travel Guide for Gun Owners Summary (8-page PDF) »

Two Knowledgeable Attorneys Explain State Law Issues When Traveling

In this video U.S. LawShield Independent Program Attorneys Richard Hayes and Emily Taylor provide essential information for traveling with firearms. Discussion includes essential information needed to stay safe and responsible while traveling with firearms.

Know the Laws of Every State You Travel Through
“There is no standardization of gun laws within the 50 individual states, so even if a state recognizes your handgun license or permit, they may have additional restrictions on certain types of firearms, magazines, or ammunition,” said Evans. “In some states, it’s illegal for a non-resident to possess a firearm in the passenger compartment of their vehicle. And, because you are subject to a state’s laws when you are in that state, if you break their laws, you could be committing a crime — whether you think you intentionally broke the law or not,” he added.

“Remember, not knowing the law is not a valid defense,” stated Evans. “Use our Travel Guide for Gun Owners for whatever state you’re traveling through, and learn which states honor your carry license or permit before you go.”

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May 11th, 2022

Brownells Contest — $9999 Prize SIG .277 Fury MCX-Spear

.277 Sig Fury MCX-Spear rifle

So, are you feeling lucky? Then you may want to head over to Brownells.com. Right now Brownells and SIG SAUER are running a cool contest, with an impressive Grand Prize valued at $9,999.00.

PRIZE PACKAGE: Brownells customers will get a chance to win a SIG MCX-Spear chambered in .277 Fury, along with a training class hosted at the SIG SAUER Academy, airfare to the class and lodging, and an SLX suppressor. The hardware and the Academy training trip have a combined value of $9,999.00.

The contest runs through May 15, 2022. Get more INFO or enter via the Brownells SIG MCX-Spear & Training Sweepstakes page. No purchase is necessary. However, the winner must be legally eligible to own the SIG MCX-Spear, and must be from a state where Suppressors and Short Barreled Rifles are legal with the ATF tax stamp.

.277 Sig Fury MCX-Spear rifle

.277 Fury — Modern Hybrid Cartridge That Delivers Amazing Velocities
The .277 Fury cartridge (shown below) is the same length as the .308 Winchester and has a unique hybrid three-piece cartridge case allowing for increased pressures that drive bullets at high velocities. The MCX-Spear is the civilian version of the SIG rifle recently chosen by the US Army as the new Next Generation Squad Weapons System.

.277 Sig Fury MCX-Spear rifle

“Right now, civilian variants of the MCX-Spear are very limited in number and almost impossible to find,” said Brownells Marketing V.P. Ryan Repp. “This giveaway is a great chance for somebody to win one, and we’re very happy we can partner with a great company like SIG SAUER to offer this fantastic prize.”

MCX-Spear Rifle Features Short Barrel and Suppressor
The MCX-Spear Prize Rifle is a Short Barreled Rifle (SBR) with a 13″ barrel and SLX suppressor optimized for this and its special ammunition. Both the rifle and suppressor are subject to Federal paperwork and rules under the ATF. Brownells will cover the $400 for the two required tax stamps. Obviously, the winner will need to live in a state that permits suppressors and short-barreled rifles.

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May 10th, 2022

Varmint Cartridge Options and Tips for Novice Varmint Hunters

Bill white varmint hunting North South Dakota Wyoming 6x47 6.5-284 22BR .204 Ruger
Here is one of Bill Reid’s 6mmBR (6BR) rigs. Like his Sako 6 PPC, this is exceptionally accurate.

AccurateShooter Forum member Bill White (aka “CT10Ring”) is a New Yorker who relocated to Idaho in his senior years. From his Idaho home, Bill enjoys long-range target shooting. But his favorite gun pastime is varmint hunting in nearby states — the Dakotas, Montana, and Wyoming. Every year he loads up his truck and hits the road, often doing a grand circle route, visiting prairie dog havens in multiple states.

Bill has a large rifle collection, most of which see duty in the varmint fields of Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming. Here are his key “take-aways” for his eight favorite varmint chamberings: .204 Ruger, .223 Rem, .22-250, .22 BR, .22-243, 6 PPC, 6mmBR, and 6-6.5×47 Lapua (aka 6×47).

Eight Great Varmint Cartridge Types — .204, .224, .243 Calibers

.204 Ruger — This delivers great velocity with the little .20-caliber bullets, with mild recoil. The .204 Ruger easily reaches out to 400 yards, but heavier winds do move the tiny bullet around. Tremendous splat factor under 250 yards. I use Sierra 39gr bullets with IMR 8208 XBR in a Sako 75. Even now, .204 Ruger ammo is relatively easy to find.

Bill white varmint hunting North South Dakota Wyoming 6x47 6.5-284 22BR .204 Ruger

.223 Remington — Probably the most popular centerfire rifle round in the USA, the .223 Rem offers inexpensive brass, and is a great choice for AR-15 owners. If you run short on ammo, you can find it nearly everywhere. I often bring one AR-15 and one .223 Rem bolt gun on varmint safaris. My Rem 700 5R 1:9″-twist barrel likes 53gr V-Max bullets.

.22 BR — My .22 BR is my first choice for most prairie dog missions. Accuracy is superb with necked-down 6mmBR Lapua brass — quarter-MOA and blazing fast. With the right twist rate, this chambering can shoot anything from 40gr FB bullets to 80gr VLDs. Load development is easy. Below is my .22 BR ammo for another varmint trip. I use 55gr Sierra BlitzKings with Varget in my 1:12″-twist Shilen-barreled rifle. 60gr Bergers are very accurate with a fairly flat trajectory for useful distances.

Bill white varmint hunting North South Dakota Wyoming 6x47 6.5-284 22BR .204 Ruger

.22-250 Rem — A classic varmint cartridge, the .22-250 with 50gr V-Maxs delivers spectacular hits. If three P-Dogs happen to be lined up, I’ve witnessed one .22-250 shot take ‘em all out with a triple hit. I currently have five .22-250-chambered rifles: 3 Sako 75s, one Rem 700, and a single shot Nesika that shoots tiny groups. I favor the very deadly Berger 52gr Varmint HP. Making a custom .22-250? With a 1:8″-twist barrel you can use the full weight range of .22-cal bullets, while spinning the lighter bullets fast for “red mist” effect. Remember this cartridge can be a barrel burner. Don’t shoot too many rounds too quickly.

.22-243 Win — This wildcat is even more potent than the .22-250, delivering devastating results on P-Dogs. Run a .243 Win case slowly through a full-length .22-243 die, with plenty of lube to form the brass. I start with Lapua .243 Win brass. There can be some issues necking-down the brass. Watch for donuts forming at the neck-shoulder junction. I bought my .22-243 rifle not sure how it would perform. But now I love shooting it. My .22-243 delivers half-MOA groups with 41.0 grains RL-22 and Hornady 75gr Amax bullets. With those 75-grainers, it’s great in the wind and good to 600 yards easily.

6 PPC — You may consider the 6 PPC a benchrest competition cartridge only, requiring fire-forming. However I have an original Sako 75 single-shot 6 PPC rifle that I load with Sako-headstamp 6 PPC brass (see below) so no fire-forming is required. This Sako 75 came with a test target that measured 0.113″! With my 6 PPC Sako, I found that 58gr V-Maxs, pushed by Vihtavuori N133, are potent out to 300 yards. [Editor’s NOTE: As the Sako brass is no longer available, new 6 PPC shooters will need to fire-form their brass, or try to find Norma 6 PPC brass.]

Bill white varmint hunting North South Dakota Wyoming 6PPC 6 PPC Sako 75 Ruger

6mmBR — The 6mmBR Norma (6BR) offers a nearly unbeatable combination of accuracy, efficiency, and tunability. With the 6BR and a fast twist barrel, you can shoot everything from 40gr flat-base bullets to the latest 105-110gr match bullets. I load Lapua brass, Vihtavuori N135, and Hornady 58, 65, and 75gr bullets for my Krieger 1:14″-twist HV barrel. While this cartridge is capable of long-range accuracy, I usually limit my 6BR shots to 350-400 yards.

6-6.5×47 Lapua — I have a nice 6-6.5×47 Lapua varmint rifle, with Surgeon action and Manners stock. I Cerakoted the barreled action and then bedded the action. Shown below is 6-6.5×47 ammo I loaded for testing. Note how I separated different bullets and powder loads into multiple, labeled bags. Hodgdon H4350 is a great choice for this cartridge — 39 grains H4350 with 105gr Amax was the winner here, but 88gr Bergers also shot well. This cartridge has tremendous “critter dismantling” abilities out to 600-700 yards.

Bill white varmint hunting North South Dakota Wyoming 6x47 6.5-284 22BR .204 Ruger

Six Tips for Novice Long Range Varmint Hunters

Bill white varmint hunting North South Dakota Wyoming 6x47 6.5-284 22BR .204 Ruger

1. Take twice as much ammo you think you may need. The fields could be particularly rich, or, because of wind or other variables, you may have far more misses than expected.

2. When possible, set up with the wind at your back (or, alternatively, directly ahead). This will minimize the effect of cross-winds. Set up a stake with a ribbon to show wind direction.

3. Bring at least two rifles. Ideally one would be a low-recoil rifle with cheaper components for the closer shots. Then bring a rifle with higher-BC bullets for longer shots where wind is a bigger factor.

4. Check the weather before you head out. Prairie dogs like sunshine and calm conditions. If a cloudy, very blustery day is predicted, considering staying in town and cleaning the rifles.

5. Bring plenty of water on a trip. An adult male should be drinking at least 64 ounces of water (or other liquid) every day — more if it’s very hot or you are sweating a lot.

6. Preferably always hunt with a companion. If you do go out solo, have a Garmin inReach SatComm/GPS for emergencies if there is no cell coverage in your location.

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May 10th, 2022

Beware Barrel Bore Obstructions — These Can Cause Blow-Ups

Obstructed Barrel Explosion Accident kaboom
Above is a sectioned barrel showing an 80gr Sierra that was fired in a .223 bolt action with a cleaning rod in the bore. Both the bullet and the rod are still in the bore.

A Negligent Shooter Gets Lucky
“Here we have a story so filled with negligent acts that I can only marvel that the shooter survived the experience. The photo and narrative were provided by the gunsmith who took in the repair job, my comments are in italics. It’s worth reading, we can’t get enough safety warnings in our hobby.” — GS Arizona, Rifleman’s Journal

Description of Incident (with Commentary)
The shooter had a stuck case in his .223 chamber. The stuck case was actually a loaded round that didn’t fire. It wouldn’t extract because it was a .222 case that got mixed in with his .223 brass. [He had loaded the wrong brass.] I saw the loaded round with an 80gr bullet in it and a light primer strike. Negligent Act #1: Wrong brass was mixed in with the brass being reloaded.

The shooter removed the stuck case with a 3-piece aluminum rod. Negligent Act #2: Hammering out a loaded round with a cleaning rod. People have been killed doing this as the round can fire and drive the cleaning rod right into you. I remember one such incident about 5 years ago, the shooter was pounding out a stuck round, the cleaning rod went right through him, he didn’t survive.

The shooter didn’t notice only two segments of the cleaning rod came out when he removed it. Negligent Act #3: If you put anything at all down the barrel of a rifle you’d better make darn sure you got it all out before doing anything else!

He then chambered another round and fired it. Negligent act #4: If you’ve had a barrel obstruction of any kind, and if you’ve put something in the barrel, look through the barrel before proceeding! Within the past two years I know of an incident in which a benchrest shooter was killed in exactly this manner. The pressure built up and the rifle bolt came out of the receiver and into his chest.

The shooter is ‘OK’, but did not escape unscathed. He said there was a huge explosion and after regaining his senses found he was bleeding heavily from his forehead. The blood was thick enough that it ran in his eyes and he couldn’t see. In his words “I thought I was going to die”.

He has what looks like a pretty deep cut about an inch long on the side of his head, right in line with his right eye starting where the eye socket turns out to the side of the skull. And no telling what he’s got in the way of brass particles embedded in his forehead.

He was shooting on private property, and was alone when this happened. Negligent Act #5: Don’t shoot alone! Accidents happen, this is just one more example. If we could predict accidents, we wouldn’t have them. Always shoot with at least one other person.

He managed to get the bleeding stopped, or at least under control, packed his car and drove himself home without seeking immediate medical attention. Negligent Act #6: This one could have cost him his life after being lucky enough to survive the incident. There’s no way to know what’s happened just after an incident like this. He should have been at a hospital getting checked for shrapnel in the head.

The rod and slug could not be driven out. Since the barrel had a high round count there was no point in trying to salvage it. Note that the aluminum rod is expanded to a tight fit in the bore for the first couple inches. The base of the bullet is a little over 2″ from the mouth of the chamber.

What we’ve seen here is negligence and an absolute indifference to the established rules of safe reloading and gun handling, from start to finish, capped off with the shooter’s foolish avoidance of medical treatment. This shooter is lucky to be alive, but he’s surely used up all his luck. Don’t assume you’ll be so fortunate.

This article originally appeared in the Rifleman’s Journal website, which is no longer available.

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